Wednesday, January 22, 2014


When transferal of thought occurs through a mechanical process known as "writing," regardless of the medium, a permanent record is made of that thought. No longer ethereal or undefinable, it becomes an entity that can be debated or argued, praised or denounced. Often that thought is subliminal or subconscious, not by design or deduction. Whether the thought appears on paper through primitive muscular contraction and expansion, pushing and pulling a stick or ink-stained quill, or on a computer-controlled glass panel illuminated by electricity directed by human manipulation, that thought distinguishes human intelligence from all other forms on our planet. I often look back at my typing and read what I wrote in absolute awe. I have no idea how it got there. I never know what will appear on my computer screen. Well, maybe you do when you sit down to write, but I certainly don't. I often open my word processor and start typing and don't know why. 

The inspiration to transfer thought to a permanent memorial often emerges from an undefined state. Some call it the work of a muse, like “my muse wanted to say...” But my muse just sits there, probably on Facebook and not paying any attention to the fact I'm trying to write! The result is I'm constantly surprised by what pops up. So are you, probably, if you bother to read my nonsense. I'm sure if I had a muse, it would be surprised, too. You might think I don't recognize when the muse is typing for me, but I know better. I've read what muses write for other people, and it's nothing like what pops up on my screen. Muses write beautiful poetry, or involved, mysterious stories with incredibly interesting characters, not the mundane nonsense that shows up on my computer screen. No, no self respecting muse would own up to this stuff. 

Rarely do I have what is called “writers block,” the condition muses are supposed to lead writers through. More often than not, I have something to write and don't have any paper, or a computer to key into, as the case may be. Frustrated, I scribble on napkins, invoices, bills, and envelopes that I invariably, and unconsciously, throw away. Yes, they usually get thrown out well before I go looking for them, trying to piece together the great idea that I had two or three days ago. Or, two or three hours ago. Some days are like that.

Petey - Prime suspect
Writer's block only happens when I have to write something I don't want to write about. You know, something distasteful, or even worse, boring. Boring is the worst. I would rather read something really stupid I wrote as long as it isn't boring. Do I argue with myself? Constantly. Especially when I go back and reread something I wrote then put away for some reason or other. Where was my muse then? I really do put stuff away after I write it. Stephen King taught me that in his mandatory reading for any aspiring writer, “On Writing.”

How writers summon their muses baffles me. I have a hunch where mine might be. It's sitting in front of a PC somewhere checking Facebook. I know once I'm on Facebook, I'm done for the night. Tuck me in when you unplug my PC, I'll be sitting there glassy-eyed in a catatonic state waiting to see how many people like my last posting describing the amount of ear wax I successfully removed by using ear-candles.

My muse is undoubtedly just addicted as I am, I can't seem to get its attention. Wait! Is that laughing I hear? Why did I write this? Where did all this nonsense come from? Oh, Facebook is down. Aah! No wonder!

1 comment:

Unknown said...

Like any artist when you sit down to work all you see in front of you is a blank canvas. The inspiration springs from some where in the in the minds eye.